Mindfulness doesn't have to mean meditation

I held an impromptu focus group with some friends in the pub recently. As I started gearing up to launch The Village Counsellor, I was shamelessly gathering information, advice and support from anyone who would give it. So I asked my friends to share with me what emotional and mental health support was available in their workplace. One friend said something that particularly struck me: that at her workplace, there seemed to be an obsession with mindfulness. She said that was all well and good, but she personally thought it was useless to her, because she simply isn't a sit-quietly-and-meditate kind of person. One might respond that that's precisely why it might benefit her; but the thing i

Mental health in the workplace

Last week, the Health and Safety Executive published its annual ill health and injury statistics for 2016/17. The HSE found that mental ill health was the leading cause of work-related illness, and necessitated significantly more time off work than any other cause. The statistics show that 40% of work-related ill health cases - more than half a million workers - reported stress, depression or anxiety. That's almost 2% of the country's working population suffering with work-related mental health concerns. 44% of these individuals cited their workload as the main cause of their difficulties, while 14% cited lack of support, and 13% violence and bullying. The picture is particularly severe in

Talking about shame

“The way that shame operates is how the subject feels under the eyes of another person. Basically, shame needs a witness, so we need to engage in some kind of behaviour that is witnessed by another, and then the consequence of that witnessing is that we are shamed... What happens after that is we internalise those people’s eyes, so in a sense we can shame ourselves by imagining how people feel about our behaviour afterwards.” Psychotherapist Aaron Balick speaks on this week’s episode of The Digital Human about the influence of shame in our lives: how it can control and limit our behaviour and our beliefs about ourselves. And Seraphina Ferraro, who became trapped in an abusive relationship b

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